When you ask a Portlander where to get a good, creative cocktail, your answers will vary from person to person but nearly everyone’s list will include the Teardrop Lounge. Centrally located in the Pearl district, Teardrop offers up a nice combination of classic cocktails and their own creations.
There were a few empty tables when we arrived at 8:00 Saturday evening. Ours was a large party and we had the foresight to make a reservation (taken for parties of six or more, if I remember correctly), but we might have been able to get by without it. Any later than that and all bets would have been off, as the bar filled up quickly as the evening went on. We were lucky enough to get a couple tables by the front windows so we had a good view of the bar, the street outside, and were far enough away from the center of things that we could hold a conversation without too much trouble.
I started with a Modus Operandi (a phrase which always reminds me of one of David Lynch’s lines in Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me). The Modus Operandi contains rye, Amaro Nonino, Carpano Antica, sasparilla and clove tinctures, and bitters, and it was excellent. For once, I didn’t take notes on what we were drinking, so I don’t remember everything we tried, but between the eight of us we sampled pretty much everything on the specialty cocktail menu and nothing disappointed.
While the drinks are all very good, I find the atmosphere at Teardrop leaves something to be desired. The decor is all very modern and not really to my taste, and there’s very much a “hip”, “downtown” sort of crowd (for lack of a better description). None of this is a problem, of course, but it’s just not my preferred type of place. I do go here from time to time but generally don’t go too much out of my way for it, when there are other great spots more to my liking. The cocktails, however, definitely make it all worth while.